In a victory for Texas teachers, the State Board for Educator Certification adopted a TCTA recommendation at its Oct. 24, 2014, meeting to undo a rule change that would have exposed some educators to unfair certification sanctions.

The rule change would have resulted in certificate sanctions for educators who failed to turn in any information required by SBEC, regardless of whether an educator did so intentionally or whether it was an innocent mistake.

TCTA pointed out that the former SBEC rule sanctioned only educators who willfully or recklessly failed to provide required information to SBEC, but that when SBEC removed the phrase “willfully or recklessly," it extended it to educators who inadvertently failed to turn in required information.

Although TEA’s stated intent was to align the rule with a similar change to a different rule related to failure to report information needed for the educator preparation program accountability system, the actual language in the rule had far broader applicability than to just situations in the context of educator preparation program accountability.

TCTA suggested a way to change the rule to limit it only to those individuals involved with educator preparation programs, as that was the stated intent for the original rule change. SBEC adopted TCTA’s suggestion at its October 2014 board meeting.